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doll house

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  • December 1, 2013
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In my essay I will discuss how the doll’s house itself represents the conflict between the parent’s world and the children’s world in Katherine Mansfield’s – “A Doll’s House” The hierarchy is very apparent in the town in this story. There are upper class families such as the Burnells and lower class families such as the Kelveys. The parents are aware of this structure, but so do the children. For instance “Isabel was bossy but was always right” (43). The Burnells would not send their children to the town school “if they had been any choice” (53). Isabel uses the doll house to show her power. She tells all the girls at school the next day and enforces her power by telling her sisters “I’m to tell…because I’m the eldest” (41) The Burnell children were given a dolls house from Ms. Hay. The contents of the doll’s house are described in such a way that it is special in the eyes of the children, though it may seem like a “plastic toy” to adults. The contents of the doll house are mentioned with a bit of detail in a long list, to show how amazing they are from the children’s point of view. “They had never seen anything like it in their lives...” (25) “..pictures on the walls painted on the paper, with gold frames complete. Red carpet covered all floors except the kitchen, red plush chairs in the drawing room, green in the dining room..” (27). The list goes on mentioning the colours, giving us the children’s impression of the doll house, showing how new and amazing it is because they have never seen anything like it. Describing the doll house with such detail shows rather than tells us how the children feel about it. Inside the house, sitting on the dining room table, there is a tiny little lamp which Isabel leaves out when describing it to the kids at school, but Kezia reminds her of it, which shows how much it means to Kezia. This shows that even though there are little things that seem unimportant and ignored, that there will be at least one person to take notice...